The Beauty of Blossoms

The Beauty of Blossoms

The colours and smells are overwhelmingly beautiful in the city ‘s parks and along the streets. Had to take some photos and hope you like the results. I find it a challenge to get a good composition but think it is successful. These ones are of a deceased friend’s memorial tree in one of the parks. It started off spindly but it starting to take shape. She died in 2006, and I was surprised so much time has gone by. I want to develop these photos and send to her parents who live in another province but am sure they would appreciate the pictures.

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The others are from the neighbourhood.

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First visit to Pond in North Edmonton

First visit to Pond in North Edmonton

There is a storm run-off pond in north Edmonton that I like to go to and it is accessible by public transit so off I went after re-arranging my camera bag to pack in snacks and a water bottle. I loved being here and while not all the birds are back , I did see some Red-necked Grebes and Mallards and House Sparrows and was very happy that I had the energy to walk all around the pond.

Hope you enjoy my captures, they were taken on various sides of the pond in the afternoon, you can really see the difference in light.

This male Mallard Duck was warning someone to not come any closer.IMG_0013-2

Red-necked Grebes are nesting here probaly a dozen nests around the pond.

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Even the House Sparrows take on a certain beauty.IMG_0070-2

Got a nice close-up of this male Mallard at the height of “handsome.”IMG_0049-2

A pair of Mallards resting in the sun. They are enjoying it as much as I.IMG_0021-2

The Common Crackle is anything but “common” during breeding season.IMG_0062-2

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There are a few pairs of Canada Geese here.IMG_0095-2

Here I observed them displaying, taking turns splashing water over their backs and alternate;y dunking their heads.IMG_0124-2

And I got the whole sequence but took two other photos  and when I turned back , the male was climbing aboard.IMG_0137-2

The Grebes chased this male Blackbird out of the reeds then he posed on the rocks for me.Great eye contact!IMG_0219-2

He was eating seeds left by someone else.IMG_0220-2

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Red-Necked GrebeIMG_0254-2

This one is calling his mate his crest is slightly risen.IMG_0300-3

More to come , as this is a great place to observe , picnic and just relax while taking photos.I look forward to the return of the Cormorants, Great Blue Heron and American white Pelicans..

First Ruddy Duck of the Season

First Ruddy Duck of the Season

Didn’t find the Hooded Merganzer that I had heard was around but very pleased that I spotted  my first male Ruddy Duck and he was diving away at the edge of this pond, then disappeared as suddenly as he first showed up. I would not be surprised if he had a mate in the reeds. I saw a couple of pair here last year.

No, I am not going to clone out the weeds that are draped over him in the first shot.Colour is off because I forgot to change my WB settings from the indoor ceremony. Tried to adjust to the best of my ability.I took these photos on a neighbourhood pond in St Albert, Alberta north of Edmonton.

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Intercultural Circle

What an amazing time I had at the Hindu Cultural Center on Sunday! It is the first time that I have been to a temple and the historical occasion was a meeting of two groups, the Hindu and Indigenous cultures and their similar spirituality, a spark that started in the 1800’s with a visit to the Winnipeg Train Station by a visiting monk, and I regret that I left my notes at home while I type this out at the library, so promise to update soon. We watched as the children were invited to take place in a sacred fire ceremony, observed smudging by a Metis Cree Elder, listened to drumming by the Chubby Cree Drummers and took part in a round dance. This is a beginning of a collaboration of two cultures to share ceremony and celebrate Unity through Diversity.

Children taking part in the sacred fire ceremony. I recognized the same gestures of “washing smoke” to the eyes and mouth , which is a cleansing ritual in Indigenous circles.

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The Chubby Cree Drummers were strong in Voice and rhythm. Rare to have female drummers but hope to see more in the future. The young man has an bright future in drumming ahead of him.IMG_0044-2